In the digital era, Corporate Communications is about so much more than memos and newsletters (although sometimes it’s about that too…). It’s about reaching your audience where they are. Find out how one client leveraged their SharePoint intranet to reach stakeholders from the factory floor to the global satellite office.
A Global Perspective
Our Corporate Communications team is responsible for the news and press releases posted on our website, intranet, and various media channels. Thanks to an outdated intranet and stale content – only 48% of employees in North America and 19% of employees outside of North America use it on a daily basis – in addition to posting items, we emailed each and every news item and announcement to employees across the globe. As a result, our workforce was inundated with email. One employee told us, “I get so much email that a good amount gets trashed without having been read, or remains unopened in my inbox.” It was clear that we needed to reduce the volume of email we sent.
Further, employees and teams outside of North America felt the intranet was too U.S.-focused and not globally inclusive. Regardless of location or office/plant size, it is critical that staff feel like we are taking the time to communicate directly with them. We needed to target relevant content appropriately, and a new set of tools and processes to support communications for a truly global workforce.
We decided to leverage the intranet to target and tailor employee content, as part of an overall intranet revamp. A great user experience makes the intranet the go-to resource for news, announcements, and updates – one that employees visit as part of their daily routine. Content can be targeted by geography, business unit, and staff role. SharePoint’s content publishing features have been made available to local offices and plants, so that news and announcements unique to a business unit or plant can be pushed out to a subset of employees – even in a local language. In creating a robust communication channel, we were able to both reduce email volume and ensure that employee communication needs are met – all with the same solution.
The Corporate Communications group also provides digital, flat panel solutions for our offices and plants, used to announce employment anniversaries, events, birthdays, featured job postings, plant metrics, and other location-specific messages. In the past, we provided PowerPoint templates to each location to run as slide shows. Over time the templates were modified, leading to graphics and messaging that varied wildly and strayed from branding guidelines. Our digital messaging lacked a cohesive, consistent experience, and further, each slide had to be manually created.
A SharePoint Line of Business application offered a solution to automatically pull and format data for display on flat panels. We created a template that includes graphic elements such as a header, logo, and fonts, all of which adhere to our brand standards. Using SharePoint Web Parts, we can display targeted announcements and upcoming events relevant to a specific location, with pages that automatically populate based on what we are already posting to the intranet. There is also flexibility to manually create pages as needed – the template stays consistent, but we can easily add, edit, and publish content right in SharePoint. This solution has enabled us to provide autonomy while also maintaining checks and balances via approval workflows and publishing protocols. We have significantly reduced time spent creating and managing digital signage, all while maintaining consistent messaging that reinforces our corporate brand values.